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Diving sperm whales in Sri Lanka © Andrew Sutton
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148 more fin whales killed in waters around Iceland

The Icelandic fin whaling season has now ended with a final, grim tally of 148...
Sperm whale underwater

Man arrested on suspicion of selling whale teeth

A man has been arrested by police in Oxfordshire following the discovery of a large...

Hundreds of whales killed as Norwegian hunt season ends

The end of the whaling season in Norway has been announced with 580 minke whales killed...

Third orca death in 18 months at theme park

Loro Parque tourist attraction in Tenerife, Spain has announced the death of Kohana, a 20-year-old...

Sri Lanka oil spill brings fears for whales and dolphins

Spinner dolphins
Spinner dolphins in Sri Lanka © Andrew Sutton

Experts are increasingly concerned at the plight of a Singapore-registered cargo ship, the X-Press Pearl, laden with nitric acid and other chemicals, which had been ablaze for almost a fortnight. The fire is now out but the vessel is slowly sinking off Negombo, near the capital, Colombo, on the west coast of Sri Lanka. This area is incredibly rich in marine life, including many species of whales and dolphins such as blue whales, sperm whales and several  dolphin species.

Hundreds of tonnes of oil risk being washed from the vessel and oil, chemicals and plastic debris are already leaching into the water and local conservation biologist and whale expert Ranil Nanayakkara reported that dead marine mammals are now washing ashore.

WDC plastics expert Pine Eisfeld-Pierantonio said: ‘This is an environmental disaster with consequences that will take years to come out in the open. The plastic spilling from the vessel is already polluting the pristine beaches and poses a threat to wildlife, as it can be ingested, poisoning the animals with chemicals soaked up from the sea water or making them feel full, even though they have not eaten anything nutritious to sustain them.’

About Julia Pix

Communications manager - Public Engagement

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